Being a caregiver can be an incredibly difficult and demanding job. You may be caring for someone who is too sick to communicate or follow simple instructions, or who has behavioral issues such as yelling, hitting, or running away from home. This full-time responsibility can take a toll on your physical and mental health, your work performance, and your overall life balance. It can lead to stress, anger, and resentment, and it can feel like an obligation rather than a relationship with your dependent family member.
Fortunately, there are steps you can take before and after caregiving ends to make the transition easier and come out the other side with a stronger sense of self. According to The Caregiver Health Effects Study, high levels of inflammation and depressive symptoms can persist for years after the caregiving responsibilities have ended. The Family Caregiver Alliance (FCA) is dedicated to helping caregivers cope with their situation. Through its National Caregiver Center, the FCA provides information on current social issues, public and care delivery policies, and assistance in developing public and private programs for caregivers.
It also offers education, services, research, and advocacy to improve the quality of life for caregivers.